Student Research

Temperature and Ontogenetic Scaling Effects on Strike Speed of the Deroplatys lobata and Tenodora sinensis Mantises

Observing Tenodora sinensis and Deroplatys lobata from nymph to adult stage will allow us to gather better information on the size proportions relating to the striking forelegs and rest of the body. Measurements will be made on the forelegs and overall body length using photographic qualitative data that is then subjected to an imaging program to gain quantitative data. Strike speeds will be measured with high‐speed camera footage and compared intra‐specifically (between instars of eachs pecies) and inter‐specifically (between instars of both species). These comparisons will allow us to determine if strike speed is significantly affected by temperature differences, diversity between species, development, or possible combinations of these three explanations. Temperature will be measured and held constant in a stable environment from a colder room temperature environment (21°C) to a warmer and more humid environment (27°C) that is more suited to the natural climate for both of these mantis species. Strike speeds will be compared between these two environments as well to determine significance of temperature on mantis predatory performance. Our research predicts that there will be sufficient variability in strike speed when observing at different temperatures and instars from each mantis, having faster strike speeds in a warmer, more humid climate and also having faster strikes through each successive molt. Our null hypothesis for predatory efficiency between both mantis species will be predicted as having no significant difference. Research on strike speed is important for the knowledge of optimal conditions for mantis predation which are essential pest control organisms


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